Square Enix sells it’s western studios and over 50 intellectual properties for just $300 million to Embracer Group. In total, there are approximately 1100 employees working in these studios, as well as the likes of IPs like Tomb Raider and Deus Ex.
Embracer will now own Crystal Dynamics, Eidos Montreal, and Square Enix Montreal, as well as Tomb Raider, Deus Ex, Thief, and Legacy of Kain, according to the deal, which is expected to close in September.
Crystal Dynamics is working on a new Tomb Raider, which will be built on Unreal Engine 5. The agreement excludes titles published by Square Enix from outside developers, such as Life is Strange, Just Cause, and Outriders.
Square Enix’s western studios have “underperformed over several titles,” according to Daniel Ahmad, a senior analyst at Niko Partners, with the company’s strongest growth coming from Japan-made mobile phone games and MMOs. Square Enix had been looking to sell the western studios for a while.
Eidos Montreal’s generally well-received Guardians of the Galaxy game “undershot expectations.” While Crystal Dynamics’ Marvel’s Avengers game is still receiving upgrades, it is usually regarded as a commercial failure.
Square Enix “embraces” the blockchain?
The sale to Embracer “allows the development of new businesses by going forward with investments in domains such as blockchain, AI, and the cloud,” said the officials.
The company has expressed interest in using the blockchain for gaming on several occasions, which entails incorporating Bitcoin and NFTs into video games. Square Enix’s president, Yosuke Matsuda, recognized that the NFT market is “overheated” in his new year’s message to investors and customers, but said that games with token economies can usher in a new era of user-generated content.
There are also rumours that Sony will buy Square Enix and it’s most famous series – Final Fantasy and Kingdom Hearts. The $300m figure seems like pennies while both Microsoft and Sony throw big money on studios.
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